1989 Volkswagen Jetta GT Coupe 1.8L 8v from North America


A economical fun and peppy car


Oil pump was plugged do to lack of oil changes by previous owner. Had to replace the oil pump and clean out the oil pan.

Aftermarket sunroof which the previous owner installed leaks. Aftermarket sunroofs are not recommended whatsoever.

CV joint gave out on the drivers side.

General Comments:

This car has been great, very reliable after the initial problems inherited from the previous owner were dealt with.

It hauls everything needed with it's very roomy trunk.

Fun to drive, and incredibly cheap and easy to work on as long as you have the Bentley manual for this car.

As long as it is given the little amount of routine attention it needs, it will feel as if it will keep going on and on forever.

161,000 miles and still has the original clutch.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th November, 2003

1989 Volkswagen Jetta GL 1.8 gasoline from North America


Only buy one if you LOVE VW


Water pump failed.

Front right shocks is gone (my fault)

Radio not working (my fault)

Notice car is taking way to long to start.

Feel like I'm, not getting my fuels worth.

Power steering leaking (Not bothering to fill it)

Both back handles broke, my drivers side handle feels like it's about to go.

Replaced my whole exhaust system (rod, converter muffler)

Windshield fluid won't spray.

Slow, sluggiest speed for a GL (took it to speedys and they fixed my timing which made my car fast as ever, but my timing belt went and that's when the power went also)

Timing belt.

Bumper (my fault)

Rad leak.

General Comments:


Speed is a set back and big minus, but I know it's just mine. I've raced a 86 Jetta and it whooped me.

This car never let me down or talking about a stranded story, expect once on that COLD Canadian day.

You get respect from other people who own a Jetta.

I crashed into a pole on a snowy day doing about 40km. The car was still running as if nothing happen (HONESTLY) they service guys said it was just inch's away from my rad... I think that's why my water pump is gone.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th October, 2003

17th Jun 2004, 14:53

Regarding lack of power after having timing belt replaced - are you sure the pulleys were aligned properly? I replaced mine and I know it was a bit tricky. If they were not aligned right, your performance would go down.

1989 Volkswagen Jetta CSX 1.8 Carb from South Africa


Gets better with age


Water temperature sender failed (three times)

Back door handle failure.

Heater matrix replaced.

Engine mountings replaced.

General Comments:

Amazingly reliable. Has run in temperatures from +45 degrees C to - 10 degrees C across five African countries, with varying qualities of fuel.

Still looks in showroom condition.

Clutch is still original.

Exhaust (muffler) - one box - had to be replaced last year (i.e. at 13 years of age)

Uses one pint of oil approx. every 10 000km to 12 000km (services still at factory-specified intervals)

Gives comfortable 140km/h cruise and around 9l/100km in fuel consumption around town and as little as 7,1l/100km on the open road.

And - to cap it all - it is still the best handling of all the marks of Golf/Jetta (1,2,3 and 4 - I've no idea what the new Mark 5 is like, because it hasn't yet reached our shores.)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th September, 2003

1989 Volkswagen Jetta GL 1.8 litre 8v gasoline from North America


Mexican-made German wonder just won't die!


Rear door handles replaced around 200,000 miles.

Sunroof seal replaced around 210,000.

Radiator replaced once and repaired once.

Some items that the mechanics claimed they'd never seen break before had to be replaced in the first couple years we owned the car. Sorry, but I can't remember what they were exactly.

Other items such as brakes, tires and exhaust replaced without great expense or difficulty at what I consider normal intervals.

Odometer had to be replaced or repaired around 130,000.

Water temp sensor replaced twice in 9 years.

Suspension is starting to show its age.

Headliner wilted in places.

General Comments:

This car has served my wife and I very well. We bought it with 75,000 miles and are now at 232,000 miles on original engine, transmission and, get this, original clutch!

Air conditioning recharged once only in the 9 years we've owned and driven the car. A/C still works great and does not have a prohibitive impact on engine performance.

We still get about 28-30 mpg using standard grade gas.

If you have one of these cars, the Bentley Service Manual from VW will pay for itself many times over if you do any of your own repairs.

A great little commuter vehicle with some style if that's what you're looking for. If you're after high-performance, look elsewhere.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st May, 2003